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Crisis Management (PADM90018)

Graduate courseworkPoints: 6.25Off Campus

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelGraduate coursework
Subject codePADM90018
October - Off Campus
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

Natural disasters and human-created crisis events external to the political and legislative environments create significant challenges for societies that encounter them. Governments engage in crisis management to prepare for, respond to and recover from such extreme events. This subject examines the role of Ministers, their staff, key crisis management office holders, and how to collaborate with the public service and other agencies in response.

Key themes include how to develop as a leader through a crisis and managing events across departments and jurisdictions that may arise when working for the public good. This subject includes a crisis simulation exercise based at the University of Melbourne, developed in collaboration with the to the Centre for Disaster Management and Public Safety that is also based at the University.

Modules include:

  • Responding to natural disasters, including bushfire, flood, earthquake and cyclone.
  • Crime, terror & riots, including terrorism and contamination events.
  • Managing the unexpected across jurisdictional borders, including the respective roles of local, state and federal governments in Australia. Non-government stakeholders and building resilience are also discussed.
  • Leading teams in a crisis and specific issues for managing staff in that environment.
  • Crisis simulation exercise based on Victorian Government specific strategic, legislative and operational frameworks.

Intended learning outcomes

Students who complete the Crisis Management subject within the Specialist Certificate in Public Administration (Advanced) should:


  • understand the categories and nature of crises that occur outside political and parliamentary structures, and how those crises impact upon governments and ministers;
  • appreciate the frameworks used within Government to prepare, respond and recover from acts of terrorism and significant criminal activities, natural disasters and like events with significant impacts on community confidence and behaviour;
  • understand the strategic and operational environment in which political advisers operate when such events are underway, and the relationships required to manage these events for Government; and
  • explore the local, national, regional, and global factors that impact on these advisers and their environment.

Generic skills

  • A comprehensive understanding and appreciation of role of advisers in supporting and leading government responses to crisis;
  • A sound understanding of political science and disaster management frameworks and theory required by professionals in advisory roles;
  • A high-level ability to combine professional managerial and advisory skills with discipline-based expertise and to apply this complex synthesis to professional practice;
  • Well-developed interpersonal and communication skills necessary to a range of professional activities including leading teams through crisis, responding effectively under pressure and applying adaptive frameworks to fluid situations;
  • Flexible communication skills with a highly attuned sensitivity to a diverse audience, and to the issues specific to cross-cultural communication; and,
  • The ability to draw upon an extensive repertoire of advanced professional skills, in particular in decision-making, providing advice and collaborating across sectors.

Last updated: 27 September 2019